2013 WAKE FOREST FOOTBALL PREVIEW
June 27, 2013INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
Coach: Jim Grobe (73-74, 13th season; 106-107-1 overall)
2012 record: 5-7 overall (3-5 in ACC, fourth in Atlantic Division)
Offensive starters returning: 8
Key losses: FB Tommy Bohannon, C Garrett Williams, LB Riley Haynes, LB Joey Ehrmann.
Top returnees: QB Tanner Price, RB Josh Harris, WR Michael Campanaro, DT Nikita Whitlock, DE Zack Thompson, CB Merril Noel.
Injuries and inexperience were key factors in a disastrous 2012 season for the Demon Deacons. After getting blown out 54-0 at Florida State near the start of the season, their woes increased by the end of the year. Wake Forest entered the final three-game stretch of its season sitting one win shy of a bowl berth. Losses in each of those contests, however, forced them out of the postseason picture. All-ACC receiver Michael Campanaro was a bright spot for the Demon Deacons. Despite missing parts of three games, the junior caught 79 passes for 763 yards and six touchdowns. He also set an ACC single-season record for per-game pass reception average. He caught 7.9 balls per game.
Wake's strength lies in the experience it has coming back this season. Whereas last season's struggles were the product of several sophomores, particularly on the offensive line, being thrust into action, 2013 should be completely different.
Perhaps the most apparent weakness for the Demon Deacons is their division. Having to go up against the likes of FSU, Clemson and North Carolina State will make winning a division championship and earning a berth into the ACC Championship difficult.
Wake Forest should be better than it was last year. A bowl trip should happen, even with the difficult slate it has to go through. A six-win season may be most likely, but an eight-win year could be in the cards, depending upon how well the veterans play and how well that experience pays off this season.